THE PERFECT GAME (The Perfect Game, #1)
Author: J. Sterling
Published on: October 1, 2012
Genre: New Adult, contemporary romance
Published by: Lake Union Publishing
Format: E-book, paperback, Audible
He’s a game she never intended to play.
And she’s the game changer he never knew he needed.
The Perfect Game tells the story of college juniors, Cassie Andrews and Jack Carter. When Cassie meets rising baseball hopeful Jack, she is determined to steer clear of him and his typical cocky attitude. But Jack has other things on his mind…like getting Cassie to give him the time of day.
They are damaged, filled with mistrust and guarded before they find one another (and themselves) in this emotional journey about love and forgiveness. Strap yourselves for a ride that will not only break your heart, but put it back together.
Sometimes life gets ugly before it gets beautiful…
Stellar reviews and a nicely-designed cover were enough to convince me to pick up this book. The fans seemed as enraptured with it as fans of The Hunger Games or Twilight. I wanted to know what all the fuss was about. As I’ve mentioned before, New Adult is among my favorite genres. Not to add that the heroine of The Perfect Game is quite attractive.
This book introduces us to Cassie Andrews and Jack Carter. They’re college juniors at the same school. Cassie loves photography, and Jack dreams of playing baseball in the major leagues. When the two first meet, there’s nothing that would make you expect they would want to cross paths again. At least, Cassie isn’t impressed with Jack. He’s too cocky and too much of a ladies’ man for her taste. Jack, though, is fascinated by Cassie. He makes it his personal mission to convince Cassie to give him a chance. She’s the first girl not to fall for Jack’s charms the moment she laid eyes on him. It takes a lot of cajoling on Jack’s part before Cassie finally agrees to a date. By this time, though, she can’t deny that she finds Jack attractive.
The date goes well initially, apart from a minor incident. Cassie becomes more drawn to Jack after she sees him play ball. She thinks he becomes a different, more serious person then. After their first kiss, things change…in a good way. Cassie asks Jack to prove that she’s different from all the other girls that he’s pursued in the past. I doubted Jack would be so faithful to Cassie that soon, but the man proved himself. I was impressed. As their relationship steadily grows, you get to know more about them. I found Cassie and Jack one of the most endearing fictional couples I’ve read about.
The first part of the book seemed a bit long, though. There’s no significant conflict other than Jack’s mission to prove himself to Cassie. And then, the first conflict—the one involving Cassie’s camera—felt rather forced. It seemed as though the author realized the book had no villain, and threw a petty fill-in. Those things can happen, but it still felt cheap. Don’t give up on The Perfect Game for this, though. You might not be able to abandon Cassie and Jack once you become invested in them. The true villain shows up late in the book, and she will shake things up like an angry tornado. Cassie’s and Jack’s lives will never be the same after that. The big question is whether their bond has sustained too much damage.
The reviews of this book don’t lie. It’s got a nice, believable romance and excellent characters. I could also tell the author did serious research. You have to know quite a bit about baseball to write this book the way J. Sterling did it. There was a lot to like about The Perfect Game, but it left a little to be desired. Fans of Tiffany King, Jen McLaughlin, and Emma Hart will find this book a great next read.
Pretty good read.
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